Former Intel panel chairman says Trump betrayed US intelligence community

Former Intel panel chairman says Trump betrayed US intelligence community
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A former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee said Tuesday that President TrumpDonald John TrumpWatergate prosecutor says that Sondland testimony was 'tipping point' for Trump In private moment with Trump, Justice Kennedy pushed for Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination: book Obama: 'Everybody needs to chill out' about differences between 2020 candidates MORE betrayed the U.S. intelligence community by accepting Russian President Vladimir Putin's denials about Moscow's interference in the 2016 presidential election.

"The President’s performance yesterday in Helsinki was nothing short of shocking," former Rep. Mike RogersMichael (Mike) Dennis RogersThe Hill's Campaign Report: Red-state governors races pose test for Trump Trump takes pulse of GOP on Alabama Senate race Overnight Defense: House approves Turkey sanctions in rebuke of Trump | Trump attacks on Army officer testifying spark backlash | Dems want answers from Esper over Ukraine aid MORE (R-Mich.) tweeted. "To ignore the conclusions of our entire intelligence community and simply accept the word of a former KGB officer is a betrayal of our brave intelligence professionals."
 
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Rogers said in a series of tweets that it's a fact that Russia interfered in the 2016 election and that the country continues to launch "bold and increasingly aggressive cyber-attacks against our infrastructure."
 
"Fact: Russia actively undermines our interests and those of our allies in Europe," Rogers said, adding that embracing Putin "as openly as the President did, and in the face of clear Russian provocations, is to fundamentally cede our global leadership to the very person that wants to see America fail." 
 
His comments came a day after Trump and Putin concluded a high-stakes summit in Helsinki, Finland, where Trump criticized special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTrump says he'll release financial records before election, knocks Dems' efforts House impeachment hearings: The witch hunt continues Speier says impeachment inquiry shows 'very strong case of bribery' by Trump MORE's Russia probe and refused to denounce Russian interference in the 2016 election.
 
In a joint press conference to wrap up the summit, Trump said Mueller's probe is a "disaster" for the U.S. He also said he saw no reason why Russia would interfere in the 2016 presidential election, citing Putin's denials.
 
Trump's performance during the 45-minute joint press conference was widely condemned by Republican and Democratic lawmakers, with many calling it "shameful" and a "disgrace."
 
On Tuesday, Trump defended the meeting with Putin, tweeting that "while I had a great meeting with NATO, raising vast amounts of money, I had an even better meeting with Vladimir Putin of Russia. Sadly, it is not being reported that way — the Fake News is going Crazy!"